The North-East has a week’s reprieve so leaders can prove that it can make Tier 2 lockdown restrictions work.

On Thursday the leaders of Northumberland, Newcastle, South and North Tyneside, Gateshead, Sunderland and County Durham signed a joint statement urging the Government to not impose “devastating” coronavirus restrictions.

In the letter, the leaders said there’s “evidence of a flattening of the curve” and “there is a collective view –we can make alert level 2 work.”

Now, Gateshead Council Leader Martin Gannon has confirmed that the Government has agreed to give the region another week before a decision is made.

He said: “The data shows a significant slow down over the past week. Government concede we need a little more time to prove that trend.

“We now need to ask everyone to help us, thank you to those that have won us this reprieve. We are staring down the barrel of a gun, it is a battle to prove we can do it, to save the economy and jobs.”

Mayors from across the North have called on the Government to provide financial support for residents who are placed under tier three restrictions.

North of Tyne Mayor Jamie Driscoll issued a joint statement with Andy Burnham, the Mayor of Greater Manchester, and Steve Rotheram, the Mayor of Liverpool.

It called on the Government to pay 80 per cent of the wages of workers who are affected by regional lockdown.

The statement read: "The Government is claiming that the North is divided and only interested in getting what we can for our own region. That is simply not the case.

"We are all united in fighting for an 80 per cent furlough scheme for all people affected by regional lockdowns, wherever they are in the country.

"Paying two thirds of slaries will not be enough to protect the thousands of jobs - it should at least match the 80 per cent that was available under furlough, with the minimum wage as the minimum support.

"The Universal Credit top up is not the answer. It doesn't help everybody and takes weeks to come through. It will not prevent severe hardship for thousnads of low-paid workers before Christmas.

"But we won't forget the self-employed and freelancers and other businesses who will be affected by these lockdowns. They also need support and we stand firm for those too.

"This is a fight for what is right."

The restrictions in high areas are: only meet other people in groups of six or less ('rule of six'); 10pm curfew for hospitality venues; no households allowed to mix indoors; ;rule of six' applies outdoors, including private gardens